Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Gift of the Magi

This is one of my favorite Christmas stories.~ It is too long to quote directly here but this is the whole idea:~~~~~~Della sold her hair to buy Jim a chain for his watch.~Jim sold his watch to buy her combs for her hair.~~~~~~The Magi, as you know, were wise men-wonderfully wise men-who brought gifts to the Babe in the manger.~They invented the art of giving Christmas presents.~Being wise, their gifts were no doubt wise ones, possibly bearing the privilege of exchange in case of duplication.~And here I have lamely related to you the uneventful chronicle of two foolish children in a flat who most unwisely sacrificed for each other the greatest treasures of their house.~But in a last word to the wise of these days let it be said that of all who give gifts these two were the wisest.~O all who give and receive gifts, such as they are wisest.~Everywhere they are wisest.~They are the magi.~~~~~~O. Henry

Saturday, December 6, 2014

The Innkeeper's Lament

"Oh, if only I had known!"~said the keeper of the inn.~"But no hint to me was shown.~And I didn't let them in.~~~~~~"Yes, a star gleamed overhead,~But I couldn't read the skies,~And I'd given every bed ~To the very rich and wise.~~~~~~"And she was so poorly clad,~And he hadn't much to say!~But no room for them I had,~So I ordered them away.~~~~~~She seemed tired, and it was late~ And they begged so hard, that I ,~Feeling sorry for her state,~In the stable let them lie.~~~~~~"Had I turned some rich man out~Just to make a place for them,~'Twould have killed, beyond a doubt,~All my trade at Bethlehem.~~~~~~"Then there came the wise men three~To the stable, with the morn,~Who announced they'd come to see~The great King who had been born.~~~~~~"And they brought Him gifts of myrrh,~Costly frankincense and gold,~And a great light shone on her ~In the stable, bleak and cold.~~~~~~"All my patrons now are dead ~And forgotten, but today~All the world to peace is led~By the ones I sent away.~"It was my unlucky fate~To be born that inn to own,~Against Christ I shut my gate - Oh, if only I had known!"

Thursday, November 20, 2014

A Thanksgiving Memory

One of my favorite memories of Thanksgiving is when I was in grade school and we would color and cut out figures of pilgrim children. I always think back to that every year. Here is one of my favorite Thanksgiving songs.

Come, ye thankful people, come~~~Raise the song of harvest home: ~~~All is safely gathered in,,~~~Ere the winter storms begin; ~~~God, our Maker, doth provide~~~All our wants to be supplied;~~~Come to God's own temple, come;~~~Raise the song of harvest home. ~~~
Henry Alford~~~~~~There is a line in this verse that describe what is happening now in our country.
And it's not a good thing, (but we have no choice in the matter.)

Tuesday, October 21, 2014


Tonight is the night ~ when dead leaves fly ~ Like witches on switches  ~ Across the sky. ~ When elf and sprite ~ Flit through the night  ~ On a moony sheen. ~~~~~Tonight is the night ~ When leaves make a sound  ~ LIke a gnome in his home ~ Under the ground. ~ When spooks and trolls ~ Creep out of holes ~ Mossy and green.~~~~~Tonight is the night ~ When pumpkins stare ~ through sheaves and leaves ~ Everywhere. ~ When ghoul and ghost ~ And goblin host ~ Dance round their queen. ~
It's Hallowee'en.                                                                                        
                                                                                                               ~Harry Behn

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Bed in Summer

If I recall - I have posted this poem before.  But it is one of my favorites so I'm going to post it again.

In winter I get up at night~~~And dress by yellow candlelight.~~~In summer quite the other way,~~~
I have to go to bed by day.~~~~~~~I have to go to bed and see~~~The birds still hopping on the tree.~~~Or hear the grown-up people's feet~~~Still going past me in the street.~~~~~~And does it not seem hard to you~~~~When all the sky is clear and blue.~~~And I should like so much to play~~~To have to go to bed by day?~~~~~~Robert Louis Stevenson

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Memorial Day

In Flanders fields the poppies blow~~~Between the crosses, row on row,~~~That mark our place; and in the sky~~~The larks, still bravely singing, fly~~~Scarce heard amid the guns below.~~~~~~We are the Dead. Short days ago ~~~We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,~~~Loved and were loved, and now we lie~~~ In Flanders fields.~~~~~~Take up our quarrel with the foe; To you from failing hands we throw~~~The torch; be yours to hold it high.~~~If ye break faith with us who die~~~We shall not sleep, though poppies grow~~~In Flanders fields.
                                                                                         ~Lieut.-Col. John McCrae

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Happy Earth Day!

In spite of horrendous pollution, endangered species and other harm we do to our planet - we still have a wonderful planet to live on.  With beauty of the trees, mountains, flowers and all types of
greenery to make us happy  - we have a lot to celebrate on Earth Day. Let's take care of Earth - so our children will have a good place to live in the future.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Christmas Laughter (in March)

My family is very small ~ Eleven of us~Three are over 80~Three are over 60~Three are over 50~Two of us are sons.~~~Come Labor Day the quilts are taken from the clean white sheets in which they summered~~~We seldom have reason and need no excuse to polish the good silver~wash the tall stemmed glasses and invite one another into our homes.~~~We win at Bid Whist and lose at Canasta ~and eat the lightest miniature Parker House rolls~and the world's best five-Cheese macaroni and cheese.~~~I grill the meat~Mommy boils the beans.~Come first snow the apple cider with nutmeg...cloves...cinnamon...and just a hint of ginger brews every game day and night.~~~We have no problem luring Santa Claus down our chimney~~~~~~He can't resist the laughter.
~~~~Nikki Giovanni

Friday, March 7, 2014

Business in Baltimore

There are some that may think that Gertrude Stein is crazy.  Not me - I think there is a method to her maddness. I like to read her work because you never know what is coming next. For example:
~Not narrow, long.~Julian is two.~How many and well.~And days and sank.~Thanks to having.~
Business in Baltimore thanks to having and days and sank how many and well Julian is two not narrow, long.~Julian is two how many and well thanks to having.~Once upon a time Baltimore was necessary.~How and would it be dressed if they had divided a bank and tan.~It connected at once it connected twice it connected doors and floors.~This is in May.~So they say.~How many places for scales are there in it.~Weigh once a day.~~~~~~~~~~And on and on it goes. Just as you think it is going to make sense - it doesn't.  Once in a while it does but it is more fun when it doesn't.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Sonnet 29

I'm going to celebrate Valentine's Day by posting my favorite Sonnet by William Shakespeare.~~~~~~~~When in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes~~~I all alone beweep my outcast state,~~~And trouble deaf heav'n with my bootless cries,~~~And look upon myself, and curse my fate,~~~Wishing me like to one more rich in hope,~~~Featured like him, like him with friends possessed,~~~Desiring this man's art and that man's scope,~~~With what I most enjoy contented least;~~~Yet in these thoughts myself almost despising,~~~Haply I think on thee,and then my state,~~~Like to the lark at break of day arising,~~~From sullen earth sings hymns at heaven's gate;~~~For thy sweet love remembered such wealth brings~~~That then I scorn to change my state with kings.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Martin Luther Kiing, Jr.

We miss you. And I hope that if you were here today that you would be happy about how your dream has been fulfilled.  I think you would.  It's not perfect but nothing is. But we have come so far since you were here with us. We will continue to make progress and make you proud.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

The Months

What better time to post a poem about the months than in January.  Sara Coleridge
has written a clever one so here it is: January brings the snow~Makes our feet and fingers glow.~~~~~~February brings the rain, Thaws the frozen lake again.~~~~~~March brings breezes loud and shrill, Stirs the dancing daffodil.~~~~~~April brings the primrose sweet,Scatters daisies at our feet.~~~~~~May brings flocks of pretty lambs, Skipping by their fleecy dams.~~~~~~June brings tulips, lilies, roses, Fills the children's hands with posies.~~~~~~Hot July brings cooling showers, Apricots, and gilly flowers.~~~~~~August brings the sheaves of corn, Then the harvest home is born.~~~~~~Warm September brings the fruit;Sportsmen then begin to shoot.~~~~~~Fresh October brings the pheasant;Then to gather nuts is pleasant.~~~~~~Dull November brings the blast;Then the the leaves are whirling fast.~~~~~~Chill December brings the sleet,Blazing fire, and Christmas treat.~~~~~~I wonder what gilly flowers are?  I guess I could google it.